US Government Stops CZ Leaving Country

Prosecutors believe that CZ poses a substantial risk of flight.

Is CZ's freedom worth $175 million to him?

Following Changpeng "CZ" Zhao's dramatic departure as CEO of Binance, amid legal proceedings from the US Department of Justice, prosecutors have taken steps to stop him leaving the country.

$175 Million Bail

CZ stepped down from leading Binance under the terms of a deal that saw the exchange charged $4.3 billion for allowing criminal activity, including money laundering, to take place on its platform. CZ himself was required to pay a $50 million fine, and is barred from having any role at Binance for three years.

CZ is still subject to criminal charges, and will be sentenced early next year. He could have faced up to 10 years, but the deal he struck limits the time he will serve to no more than 18 months.

CZ is currently in Seattle for the court case, and has been released on $175 million bail. However, prosecutors are concerned that if he is allowed to leave the country (as is currently possible under his bail terms), he will not return.

UAE: No Extradition Treaty

CZ is a resident of the United Arab Emirates, where he is currently hoping to return. He has family there, and large amounts of wealth in the country. It's natural that he should want to spend his last three months of freedom there, before sentencing in February.

However, UAE has no bilateral extradition treaty with the US, meaning that if he chooses not to return for sentencing, it may be very difficult for prosecutors to get their hands on him again. The UAE courts consider each case on an individual basis, and the result could be a lengthy legal battle with no guarantee of success. US authorities are concerned that CZ might consider his $175 million bail a fair price for his freedom. (After all, he is worth billions.)

Source: PACER
Prosecutors believe CZ is a substantial flight risk.

Markets Shrug

A year ago, news like this would have prompted a fresh crash in the beleaguered crypto markets. This time, the markets barely blinked.

BTC is bumping against resistance at the $37,500-38,000 level and putting in higher lows on the pullbacks, despite its difficulty breaching $38k.

Even BNB, Binance's native token, has not suffered significantly. It's down 7% on the week at $235, as the exchange's new CEO, Richard Teng, takes the helm.

It's a new era for Binance. CZ has done great things for crypto adoption, but under the new management, the exchange has the opportunity to become even more of an industry powerhouse.

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